Shortest coaching tenures
Don’t call racist president racist
The latest presidency has quite clearly broken many established precedents. To borrow a malapropism from Donald Trump’s own Twitter account, an argument could be made the entire administration is “unpresidented”.
And yet, what happened on Thursday was particularly incomparable and particularly felt by sport journalists — or, really, any employee in any part of the private sector.
Responding to comments made on Twitter by ESPN Sportscenter anchor Jemele Hill, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said the following: “I think that’s one of the more outrageous comments that anyone could make, and certainly something that I think is a fireable offence by ESPN.”
In case there’s any need for clarity, that was the White House calling on a private company to dismiss an employee who, in keeping with her rights protected under the first amendment, expressed her opinion in her personal time.
Now, to that opinion. Here are a few rather indisputable things Hill tweeted to her 640,000 followers on Wednesday:
“Donald Trump is a white supremacist who has largely surrounded himself [ with] other white supremacists.”
“Trump is the most ignorant, offensive president of my lifetime. His rise is a direct result of white supremacy. Period.”
“He is unqualified and unfit to be president. He is not a leader. And if he were not white, he never would have been elected.”
To support her case Hill referenced Trump’s response to the racial violence in Charlottesville, when the president said there were “many fine people” among the white supremacists chanting Nazi slogans, and in that light it’s difficult to disagree with anything she wrote.
It may be jarring for a member of the media to so openly label Trump for what he is, but that doesn’t make it any less true, nor does it constitute a fireable offence.
For now, Hill’s bosses at ESPN haven’t gone that far, although in response to the predictable backlash from the right that greeted the anchor’s comments, the company did reprimand her in an initial statement that lended the story enough merit for it to end up in the White House briefing room.
“The comments on Twitter from Jemele Hill regarding the President do not represent the position of ESPN,” the statement read. “We have addressed this with Jemele and she recognises her actions were inappropriate.”
Even that is still pretty stupid. ESPN is so desperate to remain apolitical that a few angry knuckleheads of Twitter can cause one of the biggest media companies in the world to censure an employee for what she wrote on her personal account.
Remember, Trump supported the white supremacists after one of the group drove his car into a group of protesters, killing a young woman who was speaking out against their hate.
Now, a sports journalist can’t get the support of her company for condemning the president’s stand. Hill did, however, find some encouragement from Colin Kaepernick, with the blackballed quarterback tweeting: “We are with you @ jemelehill”. We need to talk about Antonio Cromartie’s penis. We may have talked about it a couple of times before, but its continuing prowess leaves no other choice.
Once upon a time, when Cromartie had fathered a mere nine children with eight different women, the football player delighted television audiences in the United States by struggling to recount the names of his offspring during a documentary series, which on second thought was probably not so delightful for the kids themselves.
Probably wisely, once Cromartie settled down and had another two children with his wife, Terricka Cason, he decided enough was enough and had a vasectomy, ensuring his brood had enough members to field a football offence but no more.
Or so he thought. Last year, however, the cornerback announced his penis had overcome a less than one per cent chance and he and Cason were expecting — twins, no less, to take his tally to an unlucky 13.
Unlucky, because this week the 33- year- old Cromartie revealed his penis had struck again and he was set to father his third child after having the vasectomy that was supposed to put an end to it all.
It’s hard to take seriously the claim at this point but, for what it’s worth, Cason insisted the couple were finished at five, joking that they might need to take extreme measures to negate the powers of Cromartie’s penis. “We are absolutely, positively done with having kids,” Terricka told Us Weekly, quipping the couple were now celibate. “We’ve been blessed with these guys but adding to it, I think, would kill us both.” When Frank de Boer was sacked as manager of Inter Milan after 85 days in charge, he must have thought it couldn’t get any worse. Any yet, in his next job, Crystal Palace fired the Dutchman just four games into the new English Premier League football season, making for a tenure of 77 days. I’m starting to think a man who won 100 caps and a European Cup as a player isn’t exactly the most popular of managers. In fairness to Palace, de Boer’s team did lose all four of those games without scoring a goal. And his employment lasted a relative lifetime compared to some of his peers’ in the ruthless world of top- level sport . . .
Berger was a managerial journeyman in Germany, holding 21 different positions during a 39- year career. And the last of those positions was at Arminia Bielefeld, who made him manager with one game left in the season in a bid to avoid relegation from the Bundesliga. Bielefeld drew, they were sent down and Berger was shown the door five days after being appointed.
Another man who lasted all of five days, O’Leary didn’t even enjoy the luxury of coaching a game after landing the top job for Notre Dame’s football team. He had only himself to blame, however, being found to have lied extensively on his resume, including inventing a Masters degree from NYU- Stony Brook University, a non- existent institution cleverly named after two real schools.
The record for the shortest coaching tenure will take some beating. Rosenior initially managed Torquay United between 2002 and 2006 and, after the Gulls were relegated into the Conference in 2007, he was reappointed. But 10 minutes after Rosenior’s rehiring was announced, Torquay were taken over by a consortium who immediately sacked him. “It was a shock but we had a good laugh about it,” Rosenior said at the time. “Obviously, they thought I’d done a fantastic job after 10 minutes and let me go.”
Jemele Hill has hit out at President Donald Trump.